Nfld. & Labrador

Happy Valley-Goose Bay has a role to play in Gull Island, says Jamie Snook

The mayor of Happy Valley Goose Bay wants to see his town more involved with the potential Gull Island hydroelectric project than it was with Muskrat Falls.
Mayor Jamie Snook hopes the provincial government and Nalcor will involve Happy Valley-Goose Bay in the Gull Island project if it goes ahead. (CBC)

Mayor Jamie Snook wants to see Happy Valley-Goose Bay more involved with the potential Gull Island hydroelectric project than it was with Muskrat Falls.

Snook said Nalcor and the Provincial Government failed to maximize benefits for his town when it comes to the Muskrat Falls project, and he's worried the same will happen with Gull Island if and when it goes ahead.

"It needs to be a much more inclusive project," he said.

"We're half way through the Muskrat Falls project right now, and if you back up and look at it, as a community we're still advocating for a capacity agreement for the town to allow us to engage with the project."

Natural Resources Minister Derrick Dalley spoke to CBC recently about the potential of Gull Island, and the possibility of it supplying energy to Ontario.

Some things Snook said could benefit the town if it was more involved in these projects would be with regards to infrastructure and worker access to programs and services that are brought in by the hydroelectric projects.

The Gull Island hydroelectric project in central Labrador would be larger than the Muskrat Falls power project now under construction outside Happy Valley-Goose Bay. (Jacques Boissinot/The Canadian Press)

He said while ultimately the government and Nalcor can go ahead with Gull Island without including the town if they want, he thinks it would be simply be good governance for them to bring Happy Valley-Goose Bay into the fold.

"Here in Goose Bay, we're right at the doorstep and downstream from this project," he said.

"Really we continue to be a very bright spot for the province as a town, and we need to be working together on that."


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